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Software for Working with CollectionBuilder

GH users: No software needs to be installed to use CollectionBuilder-GH. All actions and edits can be completed via GitHub’s website making it easier to get started–you will just need a GitHub account. However, some GH users might enjoy working on their local desktop instead–if so, follow the instructions below to install the required software. All CollectionBuilder templates use the same development environment!

To get started editing code, managing your project, and building websites with CollectionBuilder on your computer you will need:

  • a text editor (for editing project code)
  • Git (version control system)
  • Ruby (programming language)
  • Jekyll (static web site generator)

These are all free, open-source, and cross platform software, so you should be able to get set up on any computer. They are not specific to CollectionBuilder–once these tools are installed, you will be able to pursue static web projects and learning of all kinds, be it CollectionBuilder or beyond.

We know installing software can be the biggest hurdle to getting started with CollectionBuilder. Our advice is to stick with it. Having your local “development environment” for a Jekyll-based project set up will be rewarding, allowing you to edit code and see how the website changes right on your laptop, opening up opportunities to understand and customize your project or create totally new ones.

These docs present pragmatic installation methods that have worked for us and others in our workshops, but every computer is a little different–don’t despair if you encounter problems, it happens to everyone.

We’ve tried to anticipate common issues to help with troubleshooting, but if these options fail, try Googling your problem using a very specific search (include the error message you are getting!). If Google doesn’t help, get in touch and we will try to help!

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